Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Tips for Keeping Your Dog Cool Now That Summer has Arrived

Today marked the Summer solstice in the northern part of the hemisphere, and that means the dog days of summer are close behind. With today being the “longest” day of summer, that means furpals had the chance to squeeze in more snoozes, romps in the yard, and dips in the pool than any other day this summer!

And just how did the term “dogs days of summer” originate? It goes back to ancient times when folks looked toward the heavens and visually connected the stars to form images, now known as the constellations. Different cultures saw the stars take shape of different “pictures,” including dogs. The dog star, or “Sirius,” derived from an Ancient Greek word meaning glowing. Sirius is one of the brightest stars that is said to have risen and set with the sun during the summer period of June through September. And, according to The Summer Place, while the constellations have moved over time, the dog days of summer typically fall between early July and August, the hottest, most sultry days of summer.

While summer lovin’ is a warm, fun, and relaxing time of the year north of the equator, here are some tips to keep your canine companion cool and safe when the mercury soars:

1) Exercise your dog early in the morning before the sun is up, or later in the evening after the sun has set, when the air is cooler.
2) Keep your furpal off the hot pavement and blacktop while walking. Stick to the dirt or grassy side of the roads/streets.
3) Be aware of where your dog is sitting when you stop during walks to cat with neighbors. Be sure your canine companion is not sitting in the direct sun.
4) Have fresh water in a portable container while out on walks and always available where your pet spends his time. For a cool treat, add crushed ice to the water.
5) When outdoors, be sure your pet has a shaded area, as well as a shelter to get out of the sun and rain.
6) Fill a child's plastic pool with water for some wet and wild fun.
7) Sprinklers are a fun alternative on hot days.
8) Bring your pet into the house out of the sun during the hottest times of the day and let them relax in air conditioning 
   or near fans.
9) Walk the perimeter of your property and conduct a poisonous plant check at canine eye level.
10) Keep a watchful eye out for bees, beehives (some are hidden in the dirt and grass), snakes, and rodents. Keep Benadryl on hand in case of bee sting emergencies (check with your vet for dosage amounts).
11) Keep up on their flea, tick, and heartworm preventatives.
12) Update First Aid Kits.
13) The use of cooler beds can keep long-haired and winter breed dogs cool.
14) Slip on doggie goggles to protect their eyes when they are riding in a boat or hanging their head out a moving car window.
15) Most importantly, never ever leave your dog in a car during the hot weather. It only takes a very short period of time to causes heat exhaustion, collapse, and death. Please leave your furbaby home until the cooler weather arrives.
16) And if you see a dog left unattended in a car, please call the police or dog warden. Be the dog's advocate as he can not speak for himself to let us know when he is in danger.

But most of all, enjoy a happy and safe summer

  There are only four days left to submit your entry into our "Patriotic Pets" Photo Contest! Click on our header for details. Winning pets will be announced on July 4th, and we will also post a slideshow featuring all of the entries. The judges are ready, and we have some cool prizes, too!


  1. Good advice! We got a little wading pool today. We are not sure about it just yet...we kinda like the frog pond..haha!

    Wyatt and Stanzie

  2. Ummm, I think you forgot "sleep on the cold air vent as much as possible" as one of your reminders!

    Khady Lynn

  3. Great advice. Here we have 'summer' all year long and we keep them indoors at the hottest time of the day. They really love playing in a baby pool!

    Togo, Tagar & Gamby

  4. Good tips! Do yu guys like the water??

  5. Great advice on summer and dogs!

    We get very very cross seeing dogs locked in hot cars! Also being walked at noon!

    Mind you the sun is rare here, even in summer. But some dog owners just do not think!

    We need a pool.

    Big Nose Pokes
    The Thugletsx

  6. holy schmoly that's alotta tips- good thing I already follow most of them.. although trying to talk FAD into buying a coolie bed!

    a girls gotta stay cool.


  7. Wonderful tips and so important this time of year! Happy Summer!!

  8. Great advice for pets AND humans too:) We are having a brief respite from the really hot temps here. Today feels like a beautiful spring day with a nice breeze.

    Woos ~ Phantom, Thunder, and Ciara

  9. Everyone should listen you you, y'all are the coolest!

  10. Great information AND advice! Momma is not above losing her cool when she encounters pups left in cars...here in NM, it takes only a few minutes for the inside car temps to hit 140 degrees!

  11. That is really great advice. It has been a very hot and humid spring here and now the beginning of summer is even more hot with bad thunderstorms! Lots of love, Debbie & Holly

  12. Good tips that all doggie owners should adhere to! I hate to see animals in cars alone and vow to take some sort of action if I see any this summer.

    From my huskey to yours.. Woof

  13. Great tips! I'm interested in your opinion on what 'cool' beds are best. If you have a chance can you give me your take? :D

    Waggin at ya,

  14. Thanks for reminding everyone about these important tips!

    Woofs & hugs!

    ~Bailey (Yep, I'm a girl!)

  15. Thank you for that most important post. Momma says that I am too daft to know when to come in out of the sun so she is always moderating my bake time and making me come inside before I am ready. What a meanie.


  16. oh my goodness- doggie goggles!! I have to investigate!